England U19s & U17s lose v France


England’s U19 and U17 sides were in action against their French counterparts yesterday, both falling to contrasting defeats.

With the U20 Junior World Championship starting in June, the U19 game was the perfect opportunity for players to throw their hats in the ring for inclusion in that squad, whilst the U17s had a great chance to work their way into the traditional U18 August tour.

The U19 side was compromised mainly of players who have represented England U20 in the 6 Nations, and England U18 in the European Championships and the warm up games beforehand.

U18s Matt Protheroe of Hartpury College and Sam Aspland-Robinson of Wellington College, who signed professional terms with Harlequins this week, started in the back three alongside U20 international Taylor Prell, formerly of Giggleswick School.

Felsted’s Max Malins started at inside centre, with U20 6 Nations star Joe Marchant outside him. The former Dean Close fly half Lloyd Evans was joined by Blundell’s Jack Maunder at half back, Maunder has captained the U18s this year.

In the pack Owen Hills and Dan Hogan propped up the former Trent College hooker James Fish, with Oundle old boy Josh Peters and Hartpury College old boy Joe Batley in the second row.

The back row saw England U18 skipper Callum Chick of Gosforth Academy at eight, with Josh Bainbridge at openside and former Old Swinford Hospital blindside Huw Taylor.

Also of note was the inclusion of Warwick’s Jamie Shillcock on the bench, showing once again that the England Counties U18 side can be a useful staging post for full schoolboy international caps.

Ultimately though, France proved too strong, winning 33-14.

The U17 side plucked a few names from the U18 set up but were mainly dominated by players who have lit up the school scene and U18 Premiership this season.

Gabriel Ibitoye of Trinity started on the right wing, fresh from his free-scoring for the U18s, Sedbergh’s Ali Crossdale started at fullback, with Leicester Tigers’ Ryan Olowofela on the left wing with his twin brother at outside centre. Will Butler started at inside centre.

Northampton Saints’ James Grayson continues to live up to his famous name, starting at fly half alongside Ben White at scrum half as their side just slipped to a 28-26 defeat to the French.

In the front row George Williams and Henry Walker started alongside Joe Morris, fresh from his Twickenham display earlier this term. Sedbergh’s Max Davies and Haileybury’s Nick Isiekwe were in the second row.

The back row had Dina Lamb-Cona at 8, Zac Xiourouppa at openside, and Millfield’s outstanding Josh Bayliss starting at blindside, while the highly impressive Wellington College 1st XV had three men on the bench, Tom Parton, Rory Brand, and Isaac Curtis Harris.


England U19 14-33 France U19

England U17 26-28 France U17


England U19 XV:

15 Matt Protheroe

14 Sam Aspland-Robinson

13 Joe Marchant

12 Max Malins

11 Taylor Prell

10 Lloyd Evans

9 Jack Maunder

1 Owen Hills

2 James Fish

3 Daniel Hogan

4 Josh Peters

5 Joe Batley

6 Huw Taylor

7 Josh Bainbridge

8 Callum Chick

Replacements: 16 Jack Singleton,  17 Billy Keast,  18 Billy Walker,  19 Stan South,  20 Will Safe,  21 Jamie Shillcock,  22 George Worth,  23 Rotimi Segun.

England U17 XV:

15 Ali Crossdale

14 Gabriel Ibitoye

13 Jordan Olowofela

12 Will Butler

11 Ryan Olowofela

10 James Grayson

9 Ben White

1 George Wiliams

2 Henry Walker

3 Joe Morris

4 Max Davies

5 Nick Isiekwe

6 Josh Bayliss

7 Zac Xiourouppa

8 Dina Lamb-Cona

Replacements: 16 Gabriel Oghre,  17 Will Vaughan,  18 Ehren Painter,  19 Danny Cutmore,  20 Isaac Curtis-Harris,  21 Rory Brand,  22 Tom Parton,  23 Oli Graham.

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